||This poem will also appear in IPR's Attack on America Collection (archived)
July 4, 2003
On this holiday, of all days, the earth
is as far from the sun as it will get.
My star calendar names this positioning
aphelion. Though the word delights me,
I ponder the irony that our country,
so distant from its prime source of heat,
is in mid-summer. Short-sighted logic
would have us in the chill of mid-winter.
Still, we feverishly set off fireworks
that celebrate the birth of our nation.
Myopic as to what we do to nations
foreign to us in ways that we hardly
fathom, we fly defiantly unironic
flags, sing defiantly unironic songs.
But our current orbit has us coldly
distant from documents that still fire
our national aspirations. Now, the earth
begins a sure movement towards the sun.
Will we, feeling a grave pull, recognize
heat from our past, light for our future?
Potentially, might be ...